The complete 16S rRNA sequences of 12 strains of spp., including potato scab pathogens, were determined. Among the strains of that were isolated from diverse geographical areas and differed in melanoid pigment production, either no difference or one difference in sequence was observed. The sequence of was most similar to the sequences of , and , which belong to the Diastatochromogenes group. The levels of similarity of the 16S rRNA sequences of and were almost the same as the levels of similarity between and other strains. sp. strain 91-Sy-13, which was isolated in Japan from potato scab and belongs to a distinct species on the basis of phenotypic characteristics and DNA relatedness, exhibited lower levels of 16S rRNA sequence similarity with other potato scab pathogens, as well as other species. The phylogenetic tree constructed on the basis of 16S rRNA sequence data showed that the spp. that cause potato scab composed unique branches. The results of our phylogenetic analysis based on complete 16S rRNA sequences confirmed the lack of close relationships among spp. that cause potato scab. Our findings suggest that potato scab is caused by phylogenetically diverse species and that the pathogenicities of these organisms developed independently.


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